If you’re lucky enough to have space in your home for a small home gym, you want to fill it with the best quality equipment you can. A workout bench is no exception. A workout bench is an incredibly versatile piece of equipment that you can use for tons of different exercises. No matter what, you want your bench to be sturdy and of high quality so you know you can rely on it. If you’re in the market for a new workout bench, check out the top 5 features the one you choose should have.

Look for More Welding

The more welded joints you have in your bench, the fewer flaws it will have. Welding the bench frame also adds more stability than a bench that’s held together with nuts and bolts. Bolts mean more points of weakness and a greater chance that the bench will fall apart.

What’s the Steel Gauge?

The steel gauge and the mass of the bench are two factors you should be paying attention to. These factors add to the bench’s stability and ability to support heavy loads. When you shop for a bench, try to shop in-person so you can physically move the bench around and see how heavy it is. You should also ask the sales representative what the gauge and weight are of each bench you’re evaluating. Basically, the greater the mass of the bench, the more weight it can support.

Residential vs. Commercial

Know the difference between a residential and commercial bench. Most residential benches are in the FID style meaning they can be flat, inclined, or declined. It’s this type of bench that allows for so many types of weight exercises as well as exercises that need a flat bench like decline push ups. Commercial benches, on the other hand, typically don’t come in FID setups. Consider what your workout needs are and what available space you have.

Check the Cushioning

Residential benches tend to have more cushioned upholstery than their commercial counterparts. This means they’ll be more comfortable to sit on and perform exercises on. If you prefer a bench with more stability in the cushioning, a commercial bench is likely better for you.

Play with the Seat Adjustments

Many people fail to evaluate the fine-tuned adjustments they can make on a bench before purchasing. You should be able to test not only the incline/decline, but also any back adjustments that can be made on a bench. Test this feature because it can make a huge difference in being able to maintain the correct posture when performing exercises.

When purchasing a workout bench, you should at the very least test out a few models in person. You want to test stability, comfort, and adjustments so you can find the perfect bench for your home gym.

Meta: Considering buying a workout bench for your home gym? Learn what the top things to look for are before you make a decision.

About the Author

Ann Kaknon has been in the fitness industry for over 10 years including work as a dietician, personal trainer, and athletic trainer.  She now spends her time at home with her kids and writing about her fitness experiences on the side.  If you want to contact her you can do so on her LinkedIn.